Dane downs Dementieva in end-of-season finals opener and says she set sights on being world’s best while still a child.
|Stosur shrugged off her indifferent form to move closer to a $4.55 million prize pot in Qatar [GALLO/GETTY]|
Samantha Stosur’s win over world number one Caroline Wozniacki was not the only surprise for an unsuspecting crowd at the WTA Championships, where music, dance and even a frightened feline vied with the tennis for attention.
An uninspiring opening match between Vera Zvonareva and Victoria Azarenka on Wednesday took a bizarre turn at the second change of ends when a breakdancing trio began head-spins on court at the Khalifa Tennis Complex.
A solo saxophone player serenaded the crowd during the Kim Clijsters v Jelena Jankovic match, and then a curious cat padded onto the purple-coloured court to hold up Wozniacki’s game against Stosur.
The cat scampered under the hoardings at the side of the court before making its escape.
Stosur, who opened her Maroon Group campaign at the $4.55 million tournament with a straight sets win over Francesca Shiavone, said her indifferent from coming into Doha had been a cause for concern.
“I guess when you haven’t been playing so well leading up to a big event, there’s maybe that a little bit of doubt,” the Australian said.
“(But) I had always been practising well and doing all the right things. I was hopeful that it would turn around soon.”
With Wozniacki needing just one more win to seal the year-end world number one spot, few gave French Open runner-up Stosur much hope of causing an upset in the Qatari capital.
However, the 26-year-old gave Wozniacki a taste of her own baseline medicine, attacking her weaker forehand and sending scorching winners past the startled Dane to record a 6-4 6-3 win.
“Against someone like her I have to go after the points and try and hit winners. Sometimes by doing that you do hit more errors,” added Stosur.
“I think I was okay with that going into the match, that if I was making some mistakes it didn’t matter because I probably would hit more winners.
“I guess it’s a fine line between doing enough and going too crazy and doing too much.”
With the win Stosur has all but sealed her place in the semi-finals of the prestigious season-ending tournament but will round out the group stage against Elena Dementieva on Thursday.
Wozniacki faces Schiavone, while in the White Group Kim Clijsters plays Victoria Azarenka.